Tag Archives: iPhone

Mon, October 13th, 2014 by Graves and Allen

APPLE iPhone 6Plus

Photo of IphonesI got my 6 Plus iPhone about 10 days ago. It seems gigantic next to my iPhone 5S; but is only a bit larger than my Galaxy S5. I had some problems moving my information from the 5s to the 6Plus and ultimately had to do it manually (set the phone up as new and then install everything rather than just move the stored information on the 5S backup to the 6 Plus). In the long run, I am OK with that for two reasons: (1) it gave me the opportunity to clear some junk out of the phone that I have not used in a very long time or that has ceased to be useful to me (always a good thing); and (2) it gave me the opportunity to learn how much faster that chore has become with the 6 Plus by comparison to the last time I had to do it (iPhone 5 about 1.5 years ago).

Getting used to the 6 Plus is interesting. I have fewer pockets in which it fits and I read that others had problems with the phone bending if put in a back pocket and sitting down. As I would NEVER put my phone in a back pocket and sit on it, I did not find that issue significant; but I have seen a lot of people (especially those born in the last 20 years or so) doing just that. I keep mine in a vest pocket or a jacket pocket about 85% or the time I do not have it in my hand. Most of the other 15% it stays in my brief case. I will probably look around for decent leather holster that will mount the phone horizontally on my belt to allow me to carry it that way on occasion as well. As yet, I have not found one but Colonel Littleton (one of my favorite leather case makers) is reported to be working on one.

I love the larger display. Everything is easier to read; and the virtual keyboard is much easier to use than on the 5S (I have large fingertips and it makes it easier to get the right key when I use my fingers instead of a stylus). The phone is noticeably faster when doing various chores for me (opening programs, storing data, etc. I did not notice any substantial differences in wireless access or in cellular access between the 6 Plus and the 5S, although the 6 Plus is supposed to show some improvement. Where I REALLY see a difference is in the battery life per charge. That is significant to me as it was one of the main reasons I chose to go with the 6 Plus over the 6. While the larger battery in the 6 should show improvement over the 5S, the 6 Plus has an even larger battery, only some of which extra power goes to the improved and expanded display. Just to give you some idea of the difference, I charge the 6Plus once a day and generally have juice left over at the end of the day. I had to charge the 5S at least twice a day. Yes, I read the projected usage on the Apple website. I attribute the lower usage statistics I am observing to two facts (1) those numbers represent optimal circumstances, with little or no other activity to draw on the phone’s resources; and (2) my heavy usage of certain programs that draw power. If I leave the two phones overnight starting with 100% charge. I will have somewhere in the mid 90 percent range left on the 6 Plus and somewhere in the mid 50 percent range on the 5S the next morning (about 7 hours later).

In terms of form, I like the style of the 6 Plus better than the 5S; it is thinner and more svelte, despite the larger display (which makes it longer and wider).

FYI, I do like iOS 8, but remain frustrated that Apple released it, announcing a number of features that were not yet available. I think that Apple should have held it back until it was ready to release it with all of the promised features working. That’s just me, however.

One word of warning, The combination of iOS 8.0.2 and the 6 Plus resulted in a breaking of the connection to the built-in hands free system in my car (I drive a 2013 Acura). The folks at Acura knew of the problem, as they had complaints from others. They said they were waiting for a fix from Apple. I talked to the people at Apple and, sure enough, they had a work-around to address the issue. I am told that iOS 8.1 will fix the problem once it is released. No ETA on the release date. Interestingly, I also have 8.0.2 on my iPhone 5S and it continues to work flawlessly with the car’s handsfree system.

Bottom line, would I get the 6 Plus again? Yes. Would I recommend it to family and friends? I would say get the 6 or the 6 Plus depending on your need for the stronger battery and the helpfulness of the larger screen. There are no other significant differences between the 6 and 6 Plus other than that the 6 Plus uses optical processes to steady the camera during video recording, while the 6 continues to use digital processes. Additionally, the screen resolution on the 6 Plus is a tad higher than on the 6, but the net effect to the eye is that they look virtually the same. except for the size.

I have posted a picture (courtesy of Apple, Inc.) of the four current iPhone models to give you a rough comparison as to size. The 5c and 5S are the same size (4″ display); the 6 is larger (4.7″ display) and the 6 Plus (5.5″ display), the largest.

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Tue, June 15th, 2010 by Graves and Allen


OK, so Apple has come up with a great new device called the iPad.  I got mine on April 30, 2010, because I chose to wait for the release of the 3G versions.  I really like the iPad and will write more about that in a later post.  I chose to write this post to warn all of you who may get an iPad 3G about a very serious rift between Apple and AT&T respecting the servicing of the iPad.

My iPad 3G works fine except for the cellular radio.  It failed shortly after I received the iPad.  We can discuss Apple’s quality control some other time. When it failed, I got “NO SERVICE” messages everywhere I went.  I contacted AT&T as I thought it was a network issue and was told repeatedly that AT&T does not support the iPad and that Apple provided all technical support respecting the iPad (even 3G network issues).  It will probably not surprise you to learn that contacting Apple tech support resulted in the finger pointing back to AT&T.  Apple tech support’s position was that AT&T had the responsibility of providing tech support for all 3G network related issues, as Apple could not provide support for AT&T’s network problems.

AT&T went so far as to tell me that they could not service the iPad, as Apple had not provided them with any information as to how to support the iPad.  AT&T’s store personnel and customer service personnel actually got downright surly about it.

I have long believed that Apple made a bad decision in partnering with AT&T and that AT&T represents the weakest part of the iPhone/iPad package.   That belief results from the frequently dropped calls, spotty coverage and poor customer service and support that AT&T has provided over the years and continues to provide now.  In this instance, however, I believe Apple and AT&T both equally share the responsibility for this situation.  Neither Apple nor AT&T provided accurate or adequate information to their customer service or first tier technical support personnel or, in the case of AT&T to their in-store employees and managers.

If you encounter similar problems with your iPad 3G(and I expect that you might as was told by an AT&T customer service supervisor that she had handled seven calls similar to mine that day), be sure that you get to second tier tech support.  I finally got my issue resolved (Apple sent me a replacement iPad) by getting to the second tier of Apple’s tech support and having the tech support person get a second tier AT&T tech support representative on the line.  A three-way conference call resolved the issue in about 20 minutes.  In that call, both the AT&T and the Apple second tier tech support representatives repeatedly apologized for their company’s mishandling of the problem and for the lack of correct information that the lower echelon tech support representatives had respecting the manner in which to address such problems and the issue of which company is responsible for what.

Copyright 2010 Jeffrey Allen.

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Tue, March 16th, 2010 by Graves and Allen


I have been playing with the Motorola Droid on the Verizon network for the last couple of months.  My first reaction to the Droid was that it did not stack up to my iPhone.  While nothing has changed that conclusion, I have developed some respect for the Droid as it has proven a very decent phone.  I have not had any trouble with it; it has performed well for me and it has the advantage of using the Verizon network, which provides better coverage than a number of its competitors. You can learn more about the Droid and its features on the Motorola website at www.motorola.com/Consumers/US-EN/Consumer-Product-and-Services/Mobile-Phones/ci.Motorola-DROID-US-EN.alt or on Verizon’s site at http://phones.verizonwireless.com/motorola/droid/#/home.

The Droid is a slider style phone and has a physical keyboard.  The physical keyboard is, perhaps, its weakest link.  The keyboard has small level keys.  They do not have raised ridges, such as RIM uses with some of the Blackberry models.  I prefer the raised ridges as they make it easier to use.  Raised ridges on a slider phone, however, could pose a problem as they would either require extra space making the phone cumbersome or interfere with the sliding process.  In truth, I prefer the virtual keyboard option and rarely use the physical keyboard.

The Droid has a 5mp camera, complete with a flash unit. It takes very decent pictures.  It also takes high quality movies.  As with most smart phones, you can play movies and music on it.  The Droid comes with 16GB of internal memory, but you can add more through the use of micro SD cards.  The phone came with a 16GB micro SD card installed and supports up to 32GB micro SD cards.

The Droid uses the current iteration of Google’s Android operating system.  I have worked with the Android system since shortly after it came out and I like it.  It works smoothly and easily, bringing substantial power to the smart phone without burning up the battery.  Like the iPhone’s OS, the Android system allows for the use of Apps or applications.  In fact a number of Apps available on the iPhone also have Android versions.  The variety of Apps for the Android system does not approach that available for the iPhone yet; but you can get a lot of usable Apps for the Android phones.

Copyright 2010 Jeffrey Allen.

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